UAE said to be behind hacking of Qatari websites

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Anwar Gargash denied as false a story in the Washington Post that cited us officials saying the UAE had orchestrated the hack of Qatar's state news agency.

The comments prompted the Saudi-led bloc to ban all Qatari media before ultimately severing ties with Doha.

"The UAE had no role whatsoever in the alleged hacking described in the article", the statement said according to the Washington Post. They pointed out that the decision was taken after the four states uncovered evidence about Qatar's sponsorship and funding of terrorist groups, which threaten the region's security and stability.

Qatari government spokesperson Sheikh Saif Bin Ahmed Al-Thani said at the time the postings were false and the result of a hack by an "unknown entity".

UAE Foreign Minister Anwar Gargash said that the agreement signed by the US and Qatar on the financing of terrorism was a positive development but did not live up to their expectations.

"What is true is Qatar's behaviour".

This is a developing story; keep an eye on this space for latest news.


He went on to accuse Qatar of "funding, supporting, and enabling extremists from the Taliban to Hamas and Gaddafi".

The US intelligence officials told the Washington Post it was unclear whether the UAE authorities had hacked the Qatar News Agency itself or paid a third party to do it.

With US spy agencies now apparently briefing against them, Qatar's antagonists may conclude US sympathy for their position is rapidly dwindling.

Mr Gargash told the BBC that Qatar's denial had been contradicted by its agreement to review a list of 59 individuals and 12 organisations who the UAE has accused of supporting terrorism and wants arrested or expelled. Staunchly defending its innocence against the allegations from the onset of the crisis, Qatar claimed the demands were deliberately created to be impossible for it to meet and rejected them, causing the current stalemate in negotiations.

Speaking at a forum in London, Anwar Gargash also said the UAE would not escalate its boycott by asking companies to choose between doing business with it or with Qatar.

Gargash, who also suggested global monitoring of Qatar was needed, added there were no plans for a meeting between the two sides under the auspices of Kuwait, a neutral Gulf Arab country seeking to mediate in the spat.

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